Koh Lanta has a mix of different cultures, and at this time of year the Buddhist traditions on the island become obvious as locals celebrate Chinese New Year.
The owners and staff at Costa Lanta Resort welcomed us to their celebrations on Thursday 30th January, which is the equivalent of New Years Eve in the Buddhist calender. A table was laid out as an alter and a meal was prepared to honour the ancestors. The table had three different kinds of meat, desserts that had to be round and pink, as well as glasses of alcohol and water.
Each individual member of the group offered prayers to the ancestors for prosperity and the well being of loved ones. Incense was lit while the prayers took place. Following the prayers, the glasses of alcohol and wine from the table were poured out on to the ground. After this, firecrackers were lit as a celebration.
It was fascinating to hear about the rituals and practices surrounding this ceremony and it was wonderful to be part of such a beautiful event .